Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Game Theory

In the non-fiction novel "In Cold Blood" two imprisoned murderers are interrogated separately. Each is encouraged to confess, placing the greater blame on the other in the hope for lesser punishment. Each knows that if both stay silent both may escape death, and each knows the other knows this too.

But there seems to be a chance that a creative lie will change the odds, and fear of death makes each of the murderers put his faith in his own creativity, knowing the other is following the same reasoning. This is the human element that logically, because directly in pursuit of what the reasoning wishes to attain - life at any cost - overwhelms the logic of the game. Each murderer blames the other, both are executed.

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